Why 'My Mink Betty'?

Why 'My Mink Betty'?
I'm not your common, everyday twenty-something year old and when I graduated from High School I got an equally uncommon gift. My parents found for me a beautiful 1940's mink stole at a garage sale. It had belonged to the woman's Great Aunt Betty who had married late in life to a man with money and had only allowed him to buy her this one luxury. The unusually styled stole has the name, Betty L. Jones, embroidered in the satin lining so that's what I call her. They never had children of their own and the mink was passed to Aunt Betty's niece and on to her daughter. Until it got to me, no one since Aunt Betty had worn it. Now Betty the mink and I go to the theater together on special occasions and I hope that someday I can take her to the Symphony or the Ballet. Although Betty hadn't been worn or loved for many years she was waiting for someone to love her again as are most other things I look for when thrifting.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Thrifty Gift Basket Ideas

Remember the trip my friend Rachael and I took to The Bins last month?  You can read about it here.
We were searching for some raw materials to use for an annual fund-raiser my church does.  Every year members of the congregation make up gift baskets for Mother's Day and auction them off.  The proceeds go for scholarships to send people to our church camp.

I thought you might like to see what we made.  Remember the green book with the nice library binding?

I used the cover for a blank journal.

I kept the pocket in the back just for fun.

I made this set of coasters using sharpie markers and alcohol.  Aren't they pretty?  I will be writing a post later showing how to do it.   I also decorated a glass candle plate in the same colors and added a jasmine and coconut pillar candle.

These were all part of a Meditation themed basket.  It also contained a large mug, an assortment of bagged and loose teas, a tea diffuser, and a gift certificate for 2 lbs of coffee roasted to your preferences by a friend and her husband.  I'm sorry I don't have a picture of the finished basket.  I just didn't have the time between assembling the basket and the start of the auction.  This basket was the hit of the auction and quite a bidding war broke out. Some people REALLY love their coffee.

Remember this shadow box frame?

I spray-painted it white...

and used mod podge to add a piece of scrapbook paper to the back and waterproof it.  Then I glued the back on to turn it into a tray or shelf for use in the bathroom.

It became part of a bathroom basket that included my homemade body scrub (coconut oil, sugar and cinnamon), 6 crocheted face scrubbies and a crocheted "loofah" bath pouf, all made by Rachael, 3 bottles of Revlon nail polish, a bottle of nail oil I blended myself (apricot, baby oil, and orange essential oil) and several face masks.

I bought these pieces of silverware to turn into herb markers.

I already had these Currier and Ives pots that we got at the bins 5 years ago, so I filled them with herb starts.





The pictures are a little fuzzy, but that hides the bad job I did with the stamping (and that I misspelled lavender, oops).  This was my first try.  I'll get better, right?

These all became part of this kitchen basket.  I made some Tunisian crocheted washcloths and a trivet/hot pad.  I added a jar of my Mom's spice rub for vertical roasted chicken, some decorative recipe cards and a piece of vintage Tupperware: a "Sweet Savor" for storing syrup or cream.

I added the Tupperware because Mom and I made this.

It's a travel recipe notebook.  We used a vintage Tupperware brochure we found at an estate sale.  We laminated each page, so they could serve as dividers, making six sections for recipes, and filled it with about 100 lined pages.  The pages of the brochure actually had some handy information about how long you can keep foods and what freezes well, etc.

I carry a notebook with a similar purpose to this in my purse.  I can take my recipes to my friends' houses when I cook for them and I can share my recipes when someone asks me for one.
 I hope whoever received this notebook likes it as much as I like mine.

I had the actual baskets in my room holding beauty products, so I swapped them out for 3 dollar store totes.  As you can see, we were able to put together three gift baskets, without having to spend much actual cash.  I hope this will inspire some of you to do the same when you need a gift or a prize. 

I'm linking up with these parties:

Show and Share
Tips and Tricks
Vintage Inspiration Party
Roses of Inspiration


  1. Oh, these ideas are mahvelous, dahling. Your creativity is over the top! I hope several are going to church camp this summer as a reward for your labors of love!

    Hugs and happy highways,

  2. Thank you for your kind words.

  3. Wow. I never would have guessed that journal was made from a book cover. How did you punch the holes for it? (Was it one of those bookbinding hole punches?) I've always wanted to create my own journals like that.

    1. Yes, I used a bind-it-all machine. If you want to see more about it check out this post: Look What I Made-Notebooks!

  4. I love your herb markers - those beauties are the cat's meow. I'd like to figure out how to make some markers for my dahlias. Very cute gift ideas here too. I hope you have a lovely day! ~ Stacy

  5. How beautiful What a great post, thanks for linking up to Tips and Tricks this week

  6. I love the herb markers! Genius. How did you stamp them?

    1. I bought a set of letter & number stamps at Harbor Freight for about $11. (I found out later that I could have had a really good coupon if I had signed up for their emails) Then I just lined up the stamp on the metal and whacked it with a hammer a BUNCH of times.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...